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Deliberating phone calls

September 15, 2010 Leave a comment Go to comments

Amongst my many neuroses is the inner monologue that occurs each time I debate whether or not to make a phone call to someone.  This is something I’ve always done, and as early as I can remember I seldom ever called my friends unless prompted or unless an immediate response was absolutely needed.  I find talking on the phone awkward at best and frustrating at worst, especially now with cellphones where the signal may be spotty.  I overwhelmingly prefer texting to calling.

Oh, and I hate leaving voicemails.  I used to stutter (in both English and Chinese, no less), so I’m forever trying to mentally compose my dialogue before speaking.  It’s a habit that’s hard to kick, and talking to an answering machine does not make that easier as I feel I’m being timed.  I’ve gotten better at this now, but it’s still not my preference to call and leave a voicemail.

So.  An example of a phone deliberation monologue might run something like this:

“Should I call X? I should – we haven’t talked in awhile, and I’d like to catch up; grab coffee or something.  Let’s see, it’s 12:10 now, he might be at lunch.  I don’t want to interrupt him while he’s eating or in line or something.  Maybe I’ll call after 1.”

(1pm rolls by)

“Oh, I was going to call X.  But – what if he’s busy? It’s so annoying having your phone go off when you’re in the middle of something.  He could be driving, too.  Or in the middle of a meeting.  But – what if he is free right now?  I just don’t want to call and get to voicemail…”

(half hour later)

“Ugh, now it’s even later.  Forget it.”

Years of this means that I am now rarely inspired to call someone spontaneously; calling is just not the first option that comes to mind when I think of getting in contact.

Categories: anal, sundry
  1. Dov
    September 15, 2010 at 5:50 pm

    LOL I have the same problem and can rationalize away not calling someone all day, its not pretty.
    A way out of the inner loop I have found is to txt the person in advance and either setting a time to call or asking if they have a moment

  2. Max
    September 15, 2010 at 5:59 pm

    Wow! What a great tool, Dov.

  3. September 15, 2010 at 9:28 pm

    Thanks for the tip, Dov. I’ve done that a time or two, and it does help.

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